We’ll start with the first debate but also talk about the biggest story of the day which is the President and First Lady’s contracting COVID19. We’ve never seen anything like this and is simply extremely sad.
It’s true that we’re all in a political reality show, and what we’re seeing is the first of probably many October surprises.
1:00 – The First Presidential Debate:
Let’s start with the debate. We’ve never seen anything like this. There have to be some rules of engagement in a debate and those rules went out the window. Trump did what he does which is try to get under the skin of his opponents. But this strategy seemed to backfire. He showed a total lack of control and Biden came off as competent and empathetic.
09:25 – A Positive COVID19 Infection
Following the debate the President tells a fundraising group that the pandemic is about to be over – and hours later testing positive for COVID19. What happens if the president gets extremely ill? Does that push the undecideds to Biden? What about a speedy recovery – how might he use that to his advantage to perhaps double down on opening the economy?
Will the president take hydroxychloroquine as he’s touted in the past?
This latest event can completely derail him or help him.
13:48 The Latest Polls
The evidence we have so far from two post-debate polls is that the President did not help himself, and we’re awaiting data from the battleground states. Biden is leading on average by 7%-10% and we don’t see anything from the debate that is going to change that. In the data there may be some ‘shyness’ in who the public will actively say they will support so those numbers have the potential to shift over the next 30 days.
Compound that with the President painting a rosy picture of the economy in contrast to a disappointing jobs report. So the two top issues (the economy and COVID19) are not working for the president. 2/3 of the public still disapprove of the handling of the pandemic and the potential for more October surprises.
19:38 – Our Latest Polls of Special Groups
In our own polling, we’ve recently polled 600 black voters and discovered that though Biden leads substantially among this group, he’s not performing remotely as well as other candidates have in the past. If Trump gets that 14% of black voters, it could be a game changer in some major cities. On the flip side, when we polled jewish voters we found that 56% percent support the presidents recent Middle East deals, but 73% are inclined to vote for Biden anyway vs 26% for Trump.